Poetry: Selections from Steve Grogan

The Day When the Sun Spoke to the Earth

I'm so tired.

I can hardly wait.

This day is ending.

Shining metal caresses flesh.

Maybe the sun has cut itself

or finally choked on the stars.

If I had been that lonely orange jewel,

my life would have expired long ago.

Eons away, when Egyptians first carved

their hieroglyphics and habits out of stone,

they would have watched their sun

crying and screaming to be let down.

Heights scare me,

and so does the darkness.

The stars will not speak to me

because they envy my ability to give life!

Because I am the reason

so many creatures wander the Earth.

All these lives need me, or else

they will be extinguished.

Without them, neglect will surely follow.

Winds will make their castles crumble.

Civilizations will topple. The earth will

shiver and cover the remains with sand.

No, I don't feel lonely anymore

because you need me, and I need you.

The Godsend

Two crying faces could predict

what effect these actions will have.

Will my skin be demolished?

Will they praise me as a hero?

Metal constricts my dreams.

It exposes them to oceans far away.

Mars captures a magic flare

and fires it back at my satellite.

Someone juggled the dice once more.

I hear them clattering across the table.

They touched cracks in the linoleum

on my kitchen floor, and wept.

98! Sweaty fingers rolled a 98!

Success! Your adversary is conquered!

He bleeds, as you would have bled,

had you rolled a lower number.

A gong shivers in the cold.

However, we are in outer space.

I cannot hear a sound.

What a mystery!

How could a mortal reside here,

temporary or otherwise?

Drip drip drip, trickle trickle trickle.

Water taps the stone below my knees.



The dream has been broken.

I can't read its hieroglyphics.

Someone built a memorial here.

They use metal and bones.

Why did they decide to start

the reconstruction with weak objects?

Every magic orb on every mountain top

says they had no choice.

This memory speaks to the stars.

Is it made of stone?

Sundials and demons leave

their ancient spirits die.

Stars bounce these words back

and forth; no one seems to answer.

No one seems to debate

these theories or philosophies.

Nobody has the ambition to ask,

"Why did you say that?"

My stars reflect tranquility tonight.

What will show me the opposite?

My soul? No, this is not a mirror.

Perhaps I should wait a while.

Just sit here, surrounded

by stones and smiling.

I'm waiting for a reflection

to reach my tired eyes.



Ancient hands fill the sky.

Their delicate fingers reorganize the stars.

They create obscene constellations,

which taps my teenage funny bone.

My shadow grips the world, broken and torn.

This one isn't going to be coming back.

Every skylight has been painted blue.

No one escapes the forest.

Visions bend my eyes ninety degrees.

They will be scarred forever now.

I visited my sister on her wedding day.

Her dress started bleeding.

Its wounds spilled orange acid,

which devoured the kitchen floor.

Ovens eject a well-cooked fantasy.

Bowls contain a hidden secret.

Transmit this foreign language

on my wavelength when your god bellows.

Time to say goodbye! To leave the framework!

Fabric breaks the sunlight.

Earth trembles while a fire

ravages screaming human figures.

Once I knew a young woman

who smelled sweeter than any flower.

When I am bored, I think of her,

wishing my prison would open.

Friendly Other Life

More exciting than any fantasy

that I could dream,

more real than any skin

my fingers could caress.

What could unfasten this magic buckle?

Nothing can keep it straight.

No mind could calculate its perimeter.

No hands could hold it down.

Stand beside the wall and fade.

People shudder when you enter the room.

So sweet, your aroma on their noses.

Their limbs are urgent and nervous.

This young man's jaw has been frozen,

so I will tell you on his behalf:

he thinks you are beautiful.

Stop shuddering. The stars are fading.

The earthling only wants to tell you.

I must be leaving now.

Constellations spell out my name.

They scream and call me home.

Good bye, my friends, and good luck.

Your hieroglyphics are my dreams.

Your trees are my memories.

Your lust is my daily bread.

Steve Grogan is from the often-filmed city of Troy, NY. His short stories and poems have been published in several magazines and ezines. His biggest influences are Phillip K. Dick, William S. Burroughs, and Thomas Pynchon.